"As flood waters recede, many people throughout Zimbabwe have returned to their homes to assess the damage and look for missing loved ones as well as possessions."
Luck is a father of four children aged 12, 8, 6 and a baby under 12 months.
“It was night time and we were all fast asleep. This is when the heavy rain began, and then a landslide was happening. My wife and I, with our youngest child, were sleeping in our bedroom and my other three children were sleeping in the other room. Suddenly my house was being washed away. We began trying to escape but it was all happening so fast. I tried to save my wife and our small baby but that meant I would not be able to save my three children in the other room. As the rain was so heavy it became flooded by huge rocks. It was hard to tell and still I couldn’t believe the fact that I lost my three children.”
The flooding hit Luck’s home so hard, it was destroyed before he could make it to the next room to help his older children. When we meet Luck he is searching digging through rubble, throwing rocks aside to try in an attempt to move what remains of his community. Luck is looking for his son under the rubble. Three weeks ago, when Cyclone Idai hit Zimbabwe, it washed away Luck’s home and his three children with it.
Luck’s face is full of sorrow and pain as he tells us he found two of his children’s bodies washed up on the side of the street.
“I still don’t believe that I have lost my three children. You know what I want right now. I want to keep searching for my child so that I when I find him I can bury him in a proper way.”
GOAL Zimbabwe has been providing food and non-food items to the affected regions since Cyclone Idai hit three weeks ago. Luck Dandire, ZimbabweLuck searches for his missing child in the rubble
CHICHICHI VILLAGE, CHIPINGE DISTRICT, ZIMBABWE
“I am a mother of four, I have two sons and two daughters.
I was having my supper, as usual, the night the cyclone hit our village. When I had finished eating I went into my bedroom and realised the window was wide open. I tried to close the window but the handle had been blown off by the winds.
At the point, there was a lot of rain inside my room. I prayed the whole time it was happening. My sister’s three young children were staying with me that night and it would have been too difficult to move us all so late at night. We waited for the weather to pass for most of the night and all I could do was to pray.
About 4 am, the rain seemed to be easing so I went outside to check on my goats and chickens. I found them all alive and returned inside and went asleep after the long night. When I woke up, I found my entire room had flooded. I did not know what to do then so I called my son who lives in Harare and told him the house was filling up with water and asked him what I should do because I had nowhere else to go. My son called a relative who lives in a nearby neighbourhood and asked them to help me.
Between 9 am and 11 am, the rain started to fall again, much heavier this. It swept away my bedroom, dining room and the spare room where the boys had been sleeping. We were advised by a local official to evacuate immediately and not to return to retrieve any possessions.
I had to return though, everything I owned was there. When I went to collect my things, I discovered that my clothes and soap had all been soiled in the flood. My children, relatives, and neighbours tried to help me save my property but it was too late. One of my children forced me to stop and said I should worry about everyone’s safety as the building was beginning to collapse.
When we left, we left homeless. We then had to move into my daughter in law’s house which is not far from here. Here we slept in the goat’s house. When the cyclone passed, we went back to the house to view the damage. There was rubble everywhere from the walls falling down. A landslide had hit the kitchen and bedroom where I had been sleeping. If we had stayed there we would have died. The whole house has collapsed now, not only the bedrooms and kitchen. We have been staying with my daughter in law since, where we sleep in the goat’s house.
I thank God for GOAL helping people like me.”